JAMMU, May 28: Senior BJP leader Rajnath Singh on Monday assured displaced Kashmiri Pandits that his party will ensure their safe return to the Valley once they come to power.
Nearly 250,000 Pandits left for safer places in the country, a migration which authorities say was the largest since partition of India in 1947.
“22 years is a long time, a lot has changed in this duration. It is unfortunate that in these 22 years the government has not done enough to rehabilitate them,” he said.
“But when BJP comes to power, I assure you that we will make your return possible and it won’t be a temporary one. We will also ensure your safe stay in the Valley,” he said.
An initiative driven by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s package of 16,000 million rupees some years ago for the return and rehabilitation of Kashmiri Hindus has failed so far.
Addressing the displaced Kashmiri migrants at Jagti Mini Township, he said, “We are aware of your grievances, if we would not have been concerned about the state of Kashmiri Pandits and Sikhs, we would not have made a study group to formulate a comprehensive report on the state of affairs in the Jammu an Kashmir.”
Besides Singh, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Avinash Rai Khanna, Maya Singh, Jagat Prakash Nadda and Bhupinder Yadav are on a three-day visit of the Jammu region for “preparation of a vision document” for the state.
Singh said the document will act as a roadmap in the process of rehabilitating the displaced community.
“We meet Kashmiri Pandit delegations from time to time and discuss with them how and what to do to restore their pride and honour. Our vision document will act as a road map in this process,” he said, and termed the interlocutors’ report as ambiguous.
Singh said, “As a major opposition party at the Centre, BJP will continue to raise the issues of Kashmiri Pandits in Parliament.”
Earlier, the inhabitants of the township presented a memorandum to Singh, emphasising various problems faced by Kashmiri Pandits and insisted on their rehabilitation in the Valley.
BJP’s assurance has come a day before thousands of Pandits are flocking Kashmir valley to attend annual festival at the white marbled shrine of Khirbawani.